I am sure that there are some of you that have been wondering why I disappeared off the face of the planet (well almost) & for a while there I also had so many supportive customers that interacted almost daily on my Facebook page, many of you who have purchased several dolls from me & then gone on to tell your friends great things about my creations.
Well, where do I start .. ..
As some of you may know when I first started my little business “Evie & Henry - creations for little people”, it was then just my 2.5 year old Evie & I at home most of the time (her daddy, and my husband-to-be works away in the mines most of the time)
I started my sewing business simply because I needed something else to focus my time on other than “just” being a mum (I emphasise on the word “just” because that has a lot to do with what I am trying to get to). Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE being a full time mum, it really is the best job in the world, but since starting work when I was 14 & hardly remembering a day since then that I have not been completely independent & earning my own money it was a huge change for me to get used to, to now not have a cent to my name (well, not anything that I have gone out and earned myself) & to now spend day in, day out at home - well being “just” a mum!
By doing something with my sewing skills where I could actually do what I love & zone out for a while by simply bringing my own creations to life it was just what I needed. Not only could I be Evie’s full time Mummy, I could also do something that I loved & also make some money at the same time.
Well after starting my face book page in Jan 2011 business started off more successfully than I could have ever imagined! Within a few months I have over 1000 fans & SO many requests for dolls & other toys that I could barely keep up.
I not only had orders coming out my ears from customers, I also had requests here & there from business’s wanting to sell my products! (I still have some dolls at www.quirky kids.com.au )
Originally I would sell my dolls as “made to order” then make them once I had been paid for an order, then before I knew it I just had too many orders so decided only to sell the stock that I had! To be honest for a small business owner like myself business was going like a dream and I was feeling great about myself being able to earn my own money again.
For my regular face book fans you may remember that in early 2011 I found out I was pregnant, which didn’t have an impact on the running of my business at at all until after our beautiful bub Audrey was born in June.
I thought that initially I would put things on hold for a couple of months and then once we were in a routine I would be able to get back to my sewing again and things would resume to running as smoothly as they had!
Well, boy was I wrong - with my other half away most of the time I am pretty much running our day to day life as if I was a single mum (& I must add I have the utmost respect now for singles mums, you are super mums!).
I am not sure what is was - if it was really that much more work having a baby in the house, or if it was just that Evie was getting to an age where she needed to have constant interaction - or at least something to occupy her mind most of the day!? I am still not sure what it is but I was finding that I did not have time for anything at all, let alone my sewing! L
I started to feel some days that I was going to go crazy sitting at home all day (well not that I sit very often at all, but you get my drift) & being well “just” a mum!
There was one particular day that I actually thought I may have had post-natal depression!! I mean, seriously I was feeling that crappy .. . I even pulled out an old brochure I had remembered that I was given my the child health nurse when Audrey was born and was going through the check list seeing if I have any thing on the list!! Arggh!! Haha, not exactly one of my best moments I assure you! J
Being home by myself with a baby & a toddler (whom I might add, do not get along - well Miss 2 has not taken to her baby sister at all! Only now after 9 months I can see hints of kindness coming out!! Eeekk!) I felt like I needed to see that there was a light at the end of the tunnel & I needed to know that when the day comes when our babies are old enough to head off to school I will not be sitting here scratching my head wondering what the hell I will do!
So I figured that if I could not really put the time I needed into “Evie & Henry- creations for little people” then I would have to work towards something else, something that would prove my worth to the world, myself & most of all my partner, James!
So I made the decision to enrol in university & study my Bachelor of Education!
Well, I started uni one month ago . .. & I dropped out of uni, hmm, one week ago!!
Now I was never one of those people in school that really gave a stuff at how well I went in school, and although I passed I never put in any effort. I always new that if I really focused I would be able to do well, but it was never something that was a priority to me.
Well, I had decided right from the start that uni would be different - I was determined to excel in everything I did & get the marks that I knew I could have gotten had I bothered to put in any effort at school.
I wrote myself up a strict schedule around my day to day routine - starting from 6.30am and going through till the girls were in be by 7.30pm every night - I then would tidy up, feed the dogs, water the lawn & then it was strictly study time for 4 hours!! Bedtime was usually not till at least midnight every night!
I did all the readings, listened to all the lectures at least once or twice & conversed regularly with the other students & tutors like I was supposed to. I even organised a study group to catch up with other students in my area, I was so super organised and to be honest was getting quite a kick out of how well I was able to understand & make sense out of everything I was studying. I mean, I could have actually done really well in school had I of actually given a s*** - but not to worry, now I was able to make up for that so was feeling great!
This went on for almost 3 weeks until the first cracks started to appear .. . First it was my washing that started to pile up, then it was Evie constantly whinging at me, and me snapping back (which is not how I would normally react). I went for pretty much 3 weeks with out leaving the house hardly & barely catching up with any of my family or friends . .. Then after a couple of days of me sensing that our household was not running as smoothly as usual Audrey started teething really badly!
She was, and still is super clingy to me and wanting to be breast fed every second of the day . .. I felt like every time I fed her she was literally draining all my remaining energy out of me. (Poor little babe, she was probably sending how I felt too). So within just a few short days, my super strict uni study schedule was completely messed up and before I knew it I had lost about 18 hours of study time! Well, there is no way in the world that could ever get those 18 hours back!!! So this is when I started to really start to crack . ..
I think I went a whole week where my head was just so strained with tension that it was sore to touch, I was snapping at poor little Eve & being totally grumpy and hardly spending any quality time with James when he got home from work, and poor little Audrey, I think she must have been sensing how stressed out I was!
One afternoon, I had some friends over & after sitting outside smoking a cigarette with a couple of them & distressing (I don’t smoke by the way, but on that day I really needed one! Haha!) I made the decision to drop out of uni.
I knew deep down that I had really put in all my effort and that to myself at least, I knew that if I could have actually dedicated myself and I would have done pretty well. But I had to make the decision there and then (there was a census date creeping up & if I didn’t withdraw by a certain date I would be charged for the whole (expensive - I might add) semester. I still do wish that I could have just completed my first assignment because I would have loved to get a good grade for all my effort .. . But none the less, after my friends had left that day (while drinking some red wine, that I had totally deserved) I contacted the student advisor & withdrew from my course.
That night I sat down on the couch in front of the TV & did NOTHING!! For the first time in the past month I actually sat there had a precious moment to relax.
I went to bed that night feeling like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders & that I had done my best, but had totally made the right decision.
The next morning, it was like I woke to an aftermath of chaos from the previous month of totally neglecting my family & home (although I had not even realised at the time L )
I have never had so much washing to catch up on, cleaning to do & had LOTS of quality time to spend catching up with our babies.
This whole experience with uni & my effort to try & prove that I am more than “just” a mum has made me have a real hard look at myself and what I am doing!
I have know realised that I have the BEST job in the whole world, sure it gets a bit hectic & full on at times but I wouldn’t change it for the world.
I also now realise that although I have always been a hard worker, never in my life has anything ever been as hard as the job I do as a mum!
So even though I had to learn the hard way, I am glad that I attempted to do uni even for the simple reason that it has opened my eyes and made me totally comfortable with being “just” a mum! In fact I am now determined to be the very best mum I can be by creating the best environment possible for our inquisitive & creative girls. And even though I wont have a piece of paper to prove it, or my parents wont have a graduation photo of me displayed on their wall - I don’t care because I am putting 120% into being the best mum I can be for our children.
So my reason for posting this blog is that in the past week we have had SO much fun in our little house with so many fun new activities that I would love to share what we are up to.
I would also love to stay in touch with some of my lovely friends that I have missed chatting with in the past few months.
Since I am no longer studying I have spent some time having a massive clean out & have re-organised every aspect of our lives in an attempt to have as many precious minutes in each day that we can.
I am hoping to get back to my little business soon, but want to focus on “just” being a mum for know.
So for all of you Mums out there, it has taken me a while to realise but what we do is the hardest job we will ever have in our lives & we should all be proud of what we do.
So really to me, whats the point in wishing I was somewhere else on days when it all gets to much, from now on am going to embrace what I do & just do the best job I can and will cherish every moment of raising our beautiful girls. And to be honest since I have made this decision Evie & Audrey have been having a ball every day from all the different activities & things we have doing & I am loving every minute of every day too.